Orlando Toll Plaza Chaos

Glenn Swanson
by Glenn Swanson
orlando toll plaza chaos

Earlier, we brought you news about a toll plaza protest in Maine. Now from Florida we hear that "tens of thousands drivers on the 408 might find themselves a bit confused." So says a female TV news co-anchor; to which her male counterpart helpfully adds (for the hard of thinking) "and fear that confusion could cause accidents." That's how the duo introduces a story for WKMG warning viewers about the opening of a new toll plaza that forces drivers to pass through two plazas– but only pay at one of them. Motorists must motor through the Holland East Plaza and the new toll plaza while workers build E-Pass lanes. Even with signs displaying "No toll, do not stop" in English, Spanish, Lithuanian and Farsi, officials say the presence of two plazas could cause motorists to slow down or stop. One worker described the project as "like changing the carpet in your house– with the furniture still inside." The project should be completed by 2009– barring any natural disasters such as hurricanes, union interference or scheduling inefficiency. Expressway Authority spokesman Brian Hutchings says: "We do know that it's going to be potentially confusing so we want people to stay on their game." God knows the personal injury lawyers will be.

Join the conversation
  • Quasimondo Quasimondo on Mar 10, 2008

    No matter how many signs in how many languages you put up, until drivers get used to it, they will stop. I've seen this happen when some tolls on the Garden State Parkway were converted to one-way tolls. The unused plazas weren't taken down immediately, so for the first month, people were slowing up even though they didn't have to. Of course, one has to wonder why they didn't build the new toll plaza in front of the old one to avoid such confusion in the first place.

  • Jadidonato Jadidonato on Mar 10, 2008

    I drove through this mess today for the first time. This truly is a nightmare. People cannot drive in Orlando, as it is, and your going to introduce even more mess. It's as if the road wasn't so messed up to begin with. Traffic nightmares on this road during rush hour is going to make this even worse. I can see the potential for lots of trouble here, even i was like WTF when I encountered it. I can't wait to move out of Orlando!